Posts Tagged ‘porter’

Of all the strokes of luck!  I’m conversing about how I was looking for a nice place to rent and this guy (who was going all the way to Victoria. sweet) is looking to sublet his apartment in Vancouver for $650 which is more than I was looking to spend but it’s got a pool, hot tub, great view, nice neighbourhood on beach street and is actually supposed to be $800 a month but the guy wants to use the mailbox and parking space.  The apartment the next floor up is $1200 so it seems like a pretty sweet deal.  He says how he’s moving onto his houseboat to live year round for cheaper.  I got his number and I’m pretty sure I’ll take him up on his offer.

He seemed like a cool guy too.  I told him the weed story from earlier and he whipped out his pipe and we smoked some up.  Man did I get stoned.  I must have walked around Victoria in spirals for 5 hours.

So that’s it.  Now it’s seven years later and I’m still in Vancouver.  I only lasted in that beach ave. apartment a couple months before I got kicked out for “having a party” which was actually just me listening to music, actually I was writing lyrics to songs by this band I joined and didn’t stick with.  Anyway, the dude was pretty mad ’cause he wasn’t supposed to be subletting.  I got fired from The Doghouse, the restaurant I first worked at in Van, for unclear reasons besides that I was the youngest.  The manager said, usually he loves firing people but he hated to fire me.  That’s around when I wrote Oh Well.

But yeah, that’s all 47.  Although there is one more that’s relevant…..


I stood on the side of the road with my big bristol board sign yelling “Van City, Baby!!”  at the top of my lungs to the no one that was around and then laughing about it to myself.  It was a tough spot with fast traffic but I didn’t have to wait to long.  A girl named Alyssa picked me up on her way back from partying in Kelowna for the weekend.  She’s from Vancouver so she drove me all the way there.

She started out with a kind of psychic link with the cars in front of us (telling them calmly to get out of her way and they’d actually move) which turned into road rage the closer we got to the city.  We got honked at a few times, honked at a few people, got the finger, gave the finger, passed some cars via the shoulder, made great time I think.

We talked about music and bands and she said I should go to the Cobalt for Metal Wednesdays which sounds cool.  Last bar I was at that would play metal is closed down now (Traffic.  Barrie.  Goodtimes. *tear*)  She knows a lot of musicians and plays the keyboards herself.  I told her how I sang in a heavy band for awhile and now I was just writing my own stuff.  I shared a clever line that I had which she laughed at but I then ruined by laughing too much myself.  I made sure to get her email as she dropped me off at the hostel so we could jam some time.  I can’t wait to play in a band again.  Gotta make it happen.

Maybe it’s because I fixed it as my destination in my head or maybe because I’m sick of not having a home base but walking around here it feels like it’d be a comfortable place to live.  Feels like home.

Distance despite deterioration

Determination despite distraction

Big Al!  Save my life.  I thought I’d never get out of Peachland with the sunset and all.  Or at least to the hostel in time for check in.  Big Al had a smooth, relaxing voice that raised in pitch mid sentence making a calming tone.  The door handles inside where missing and the wind whistled past the door crack the whole ride which I didn’t bother fixing.  He knew the guy working at the hostel that night and actually had travelled to Victoria with him.  I think I’ll live in Victoria instead of Vancouver.  I got the member discount for coming with Big Al.  Cool Shit!

1)This town is burning down

now exit as directed

Made a sound when it hit the ground

though the damage was deceptive

The people flee in anarchy

there seems to be no sanity

Lets get these stubborn souls some safety quickly

2) Surprised to find

the fine line

between the hippies

and the hustlers

The decision came abruptly and almost epiphanously as I grit my teeth to put up with Brian’s mouth running with his brain parked at the question mark that ended all his sentences.  I was going to West Bank, where I had stashed my gear with a buddy of Brian’s, to bring back to the hostel which we could afford after picking apples at an orchard all day.  I did some lucrative busking out front of the liquor store too.  What a great way to make money.   As I was leaving I joked, “Maybe I’ll just grab my stuff and take off.”  The idea was so appealing I barely considered any other course of action after the words left my mouth.  Carrying everything you own on your back is a lot like living on a house boat.  If you don’t like your neighbours you just pick up and leave.  It’s real freedom, not the kind of freedom you hear people up in arms about all the time.  Real freedom is not having a closet full of junk you hold onto because it might be useful someday.

But anyway, I walked to the last set of lights leaving West Bank, Kelowna and got a ride to the first turnoff in Peachland.  10 minute ride tops.  This guy wants to learn how to play the guitar.  Good for him (sorry I’m so cynical).

These damned “no hitchiking. Pickup is illegal” signs!  So after a good long walk down the highway (away from the sign only to end up in front of another and have to continue)  we’re picked up in an unexpected spot where the shoulder is shy but apparently sufficient.

I’m getting tired of Brian telling everyone he’s been hitching with me since Kenora ON.  It screws up my stories and degrades my accomplishments but I guess it’s better for him than saying he just got out of jail.  We’re starting to get our stories straight but I don’t think we need to pitch it to anyone unless it comes up.

This guy that drove us to the skirts of Kelowna was real friendly and clean cut.  Still a long ways from town but it sure beats the side of the highway, in the middle of nowhere, beside a sign that says NO HITCHHIKING

I need to sleep for a week to really loathe being lazy

It started pouring so Brian and I took shelter under an overpass.  The wind was cold so we made a small fire between the lanes.

A lady and her quiet mother stopped way down the road and reversed back to us, to our relief.  We dashed through the downpour and hopped in.  She recommended the  llama ranch for work if the firefighting didn’t work out.

I wouldn’t recommend going to Merritt but I also wouldn’t miss the mad adventures I was thrust into there.

After spending some days in the shelter in Kamloops, busking for money in front of liquor stores and supermarkets, I befriended some fellow shelter stayers and we decided to head to Merritt to help out with the forest fires (2003).  The good fight.  Helpin out the people in need.  Money.  It had it all.

Of everyone talking about going only Brian actually did and that was cool ’cause he reminded me of Hunter Thompson.  He had just gotten out of jail for pushing his sister’s asshole boyfriend down some stairs.

We had a sign made from 5 pieces of cardboard strung together the said Merritt Going TO FightFires Please.  A lady picked us up after a long uphill hike out of town and asked if she could take our picture.  She was a journalist in Kamloops and was working on stories about the FireFighters.  So she drove us to around Logan Lake and took our picture from a couple of angles.  So maybe we got our pictures in the paper..

Where I had gotten to was Kamloops.  I’m gonna stray a bit from only talking about the people who gave me rides so I can tell you how I got to bed that night.

I walked downhill from the outskirts of town towards the center as far as I could see it.  I was stopped and looking around by a gas station when a big guy in a leather jacket asked me, “Do you know where you’re goin?”  It was pretty obvious that I didn’t and I tried to act like I did but he knew where the shelter was so I went with him.  I took comfort in having a knife in my pocket.  He was a really nice guy though, Hell’s Angel with rotted teeth, but very helpful.  He led me to the shelter and told me about two places that give out meals.  There was an hour til the shelter closed it’s doors for the night so we sat outside and he regaled me with horrible prison stories and fights and stuff as I smoked and listened.

The first honest trucker I’ve met.  As far as his job goes anyway.  Kept his hours regularly and his cargo weight in check.  Nothing against the ones that cheated (they were more interesting to talk to).  He was an old guy and had a few good cheating death stories like beating cancer.

He bought me soup at a stop.  That’s what he offered so that’s what I ordered even though he ordered soup and a cheeseburger.  The girl brought his soup in an app bowl and didn’t bring mine until after his burger and then it was an entrée bowl.  He was done his burger and I tipped the bowl to my mouth to catch up.

I was nodding off for awhile, unable to see the mountains in the dark, when he stopped, saying,”I’m gonna find a place to turn in so I’ll let you out here”.  I was planning on riding to Vancouver with him but I guess not.  I got out, grabbed my stuff and watched him drive off.  Then, looking around at a few stores and lights in the dark around midnight I wondered “Where am I?”

From Lake Louise to a truck stop a little down the road was a ride from a guy in a half full pickup truck.  My stuff barely fit, the seatbelt barely fastened and the door didn’t really close all the way.  I pictured the door swinging open and me flying out, clinging on the door handle, my feet skipping on the pavement, only to be knocked onto a road rash by my bags falling out after me.

It didn’t happen and the ride got me to a good spot.